PUPILS at the Dragon School in North Oxford welcomed renowned portrait painter Jenny Saville to their Artweeks exhibition.

Oxfordshire Artweeks, now in its 35th year, started on May 6 and finishes on May 29.

In the first two weeks of the festival artists and sculptors showed off their work at venues across South,West and North Oxfordshire.

This week it is the turn of Oxford venues to showcase artists' work and venues include galleries, churches and schools.

Ms Saville is perhaps best known for her large-scale painted depictions of nude women and is also a parent at the school.

After opening the Old Dragon Art Exhibition on Saturday at the school in Bardwell Road, Ms Saville urged pupils to be creative when they were producing art.

She said: "The mistakes and mishaps; uncontrollable paint stains, weird colour mixes, a charcoal line that crosses a form and destroys what was underneath.

"Most of the meaningful developments I've made in my work have come out of an attempt to do something that I don't know how to do or from 'mistakes' that have taken me on an alternative journey.

"The belief and instinct to go with something. It's a buzz to create something from nothing."

Ms Saville said the exhibition room was full of artwork, brush marks, paint stains that 'no human being in this history of humanity has ever made in quite the same away before'.

The Dragon School is hosting the exhibition in its light and airy Art Block with stunning views across the playing fields and down to the Cherwell.

People can visit the exhibition daily from 11.30am to 3.30am daily until tomorrow.

Organised by Moira Darlington, the School’s Alumni Representative, exhibits range from fine art portraits to abstract paintings, and from ceramics to masks.

Contributions were made by Old Dragons of all ages, including school pupils and artists who have already passed away. Current and former members of staff also took part.

The Headmaster John Baugh welcomed Ms Saville and told pupils she was one of the 'foremost portrait painters of her generation'.

The artist has been described as having a 'masterly and intuitive instinct for the handling of paint'.

She exhibited at the Young British Artists III at the Saatchi Gallery, London in 1994 and has continued to show her work around the world.

Renowned collector Carlo Billoti commissioned Ms Saville to produce three artworks for the inaugural exhibition of the Mueo Carlo Bilotti, Rome in 2006.

She graduated from Glasgow School of Art in 1992 and was appointed as lecturer at The Slade School of Fine Arts, London between 2000 and 2006.

Ms Saville added: "Art, storytelling, drama, music and dance - these are all subjects that encourage the development of imagination, flexibility of thought and resilience.

"Read any children's development guide and these traits are the 'super' traits our children will need to survive in a changing world; in the jobs that haven't even been invented yet."

For more on Artweeks visit artweeks.org